The Magnolia Historical Society has helped document the story of Magnolia since 2001, including publishing books, producing newsletters and holding meetings.

“Making Magnolia memories is important to me,” said president Dee St. George in an emailed statement to the Magnolia News. “The Society’s work insures we officially keep the history of Magnolia alive. Our work enables us to create a true sense of place. Involvement of the community in this history keeping is most important to our organization.”

The society has had a hand in multiple preservation issues that have sprouted up around the Historic Fort Lawton District, maintained electronic histories of Magnolia’s past through magnoliahistoricalsociety.org, has an archive of historical photographs and documents at UW Library Special Collection, and has produced newsletters about Magnolia history.

Monica Wooton, a consultant and author with the Magnolia Historical Society, said that front and center among these projects has been the production of the society’s books. “Magnolia: Memories & Milestones” includes 300 pages and more than 150 archival photos. “Magnolia: Making More Memories” covers the neighborhood’s history during the ‘20s and ‘30s, with more than 200 photos and 300 informative pages.

Both books cost $25, plus $6 for shipping, and can be ordered from the society’s website.

“Magnolia: Midcentury Memories” is slated to publish next spring, and will cover Magnolia in the 1950s and 1960s.

Volume I included the works of 13 writers, while “Memories & Milestones” increased that number to 32 writers. “Midcentury Memories” has been compiled with help from more than 60 writers.

“So it’s been the most interesting thing for me to see the exponential growth of those interested in writing in these books, because of the reputation and material that these books have in them, including great archival photographs,” Wooton said.

The previously published books received a few accolades.

“Memories & Milestones” received the Virginia Marie Folkins Award from the Associated King County Historical Organizations, an award that honors the author or organization involved in an outstanding historical publication. The historical society’s second book also was nominated for the award.

Wooton said the work on “Midcentury Memories” has centered around some incredible stories, like that of the library and community center.

“So, like in book three, we’re doing the history of Magnolia’s library, which was 40 years in the coming to get us our award-winning library down on 34th,” Wooton said.

She said it is important to record this history because Magnolia has been a microcosm of culture as represented on the national stage.

“Whatever’s happening locally, in our neighborhood, usually reflects what’s happening in the state and in the United States,” Wooton said. “So most trends that we report are not just Magnolia trends. They’re also indicative of all of the trends going on in history around the United States.”

Rock and roll music moved through Magnolia in the same way it swept the nation.

“We have a chapter this time that’s called, ‘The British Invasion,’ and it talks about the beginnings of rock and roll,” Wooton said. “And we had a little rock and roll band that started in Magnolia, and the head of that band was really successful, but then he was killed in his senior year at Queen Anne High School. And it’s the story of him getting to the point where the band was just getting launched, and then his death.”

Copies of “Magnolia: Midcentury Memories,” are selling for $35 on presale for up to 400 copies, and then are regularly priced at $45. Order a copy or gift certificate at magnoliahistoricalsociety.org.

Preorders can be picked up at a book launch party that will occur in spring 2020, or people can have the book mailed for $7.50 shipping and handling.

MHS provides internships for students who would like to help the society organize, research, write and archive. Those interested in becoming members of the society can email membership@magnoliahistoricalsociety.org for details.

St. George said getting involved with the society is a great way to experience the Magnolia community.

For me, it has been a terrific experience learning about my neighborhood and the people who live here past and present!” St. George said in her email. “We welcome anyone to join our excellent Board.”